Mother had just bought gun

Po­lice: High­lands Ranch mom and two boys died from gun­shot wounds.

The Denver Post - - NEWS | DENVER & THE WEST - By Jesse Paul

lone tree» The High­lands Ranch mother and her two sons found dead Wed­nes­day morn­ing in a mini­van parked in the se­cluded load­ing dock area of a closed Sports Au­thor­ity store died of gun­shot wounds, au­thor­i­ties an­nounced Thurs­day.

Jen­nifer Marie Laber, 36, and her two sons — 3-year-old Adam and 5-year-old Ethan — were each shot one time, Lone Tree po­lice spokesman Sgt. Tim Beals said.

Beals said Laber legally pur­chased a Glock 9mm hand­gun at a lo­cal store about 12:30 p.m. Tues­day be­fore go­ing to pick up her son ear­lier than the dis­missal time from kin­der­garten roughly an hour later.

She died of a sus­pected self-in­flicted gun­shot wound and the gun was found in the mini­van.

Po­lice stopped short of call­ing the case a mur­der-sui­cide, but Beals said there are no sus­pects and in­ves­ti­ga­tors have pro­vided no other ex­pla­na­tion for how the three died.

“We’re just not ready to put that la­bel on it yet,” Beals told re­porters at a news brief­ing Thurs­day.

The Dou­glas County Coro­ner’s Of­fice has not ruled on the man­ner of Adam’s and Ethan’s deaths, say­ing the de­ci­sion is pend­ing fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tion. Au­thor­i­ties also did not defini­tively say the Glock hand­gun Laber bought Tues­day was used in the shoot­ing deaths of the three, how­ever, in­ves­ti­ga­tors did not say there was an­other weapon found at the scene.

“In these sit­u­a­tions, it is so crit­i­cal that we have ev­ery piece of ev­i­dence we can find,” said Jill Ro­mann, the Dou­glas County coro­ner. “We just haven’t had all of that ev­i­dence pre­sented yet.”

An in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the deaths re­mains on­go­ing, and Beals said “any­thing that pos­si­bly led up to this are things we are cer­tainly look­ing into.”

Colorado, un­like a hand­ful of other states, does not have a manda­tory wait­ing pe­riod from when a gun is bought to when it is trans­ferred to the pur­chaser.

The Law Cen­ter to Pre­vent Gun Vi­o­lence says Cal­i­for­nia, the Dis­trict of Columbia, Hawaii, Illi­nois and Rhode Is­land have a manda­tory wait time for all gun pur­chases. Other states — in­clud­ing Florida and New Jersey — have manda­tory wait times specif­i­cally for hand­gun pur­chases, ac­cord­ing to the cen­ter.

Laber and her sons were last spot­ted about 1:30 p.m. on Tues­day leav­ing Bear Canyon Ele­men­tary, driv­ing away in the 2011 Town & Coun­try mini­van in which they all later were found.

Laber’s hus­band, Ryan, who is the father of the chil­dren, filed a miss­ing-per­sons re­port at about 8 p.m. Tues­day.

A passer-by called po­lice at 7:47 a.m. on Wed­nes­day af­ter spot­ting Laber’s mini­van out­side of the Sports Au­thor­ity store near the in­ter­sec­tion of County Line Road and Que­bec, Beals said. It was not clear how long the mini­van had been parked there.

If you need help

If you or some­one you know is feel­ing sui­ci­dal, im­me­di­ately call 844-493TALK (8255), which is the Colorado Cri­sis and Sup­port Line. Na­tion­ally, you may call 800-273-TALK (8255). Both hot­lines are staffed around the clock with cer­ti­fied men­tal health pro­fes­sion­als.

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